A criminal charge against a former Friendship School administrator accused of having a sexual relationship with a teenager have been dismissed.
A New London Superior Court judge granted a defense motion to throw out a felony charge of second-degree sexual assault against Allison Robinson, a 38-year-old New London resident. A civil suit filed by Robinson’s accuser remains pending before the court.
Robinson was accused of sexually assaulting a boy between September of 2000 and July of 2001, while she was a psychologist at East Lyme Middle School. The alleged activity took place while the boy was 14 and 15 years old.
Amadeus Harris, now 27, made the accusations against Robinson during an interview in February of 2011, when he was an inmate at the Corrigan-Radgowski Correctional Institute in Uncasville. The man said that he had been part of an anger management group run by Robinson, then know as Allison Hitte, and that the two started a sexual relationship after she started flirting with him.
Attorney Heather E. Rolfes said in her motion to dismiss that the state was “well beyond the statute of limitations” in charging Robinson. She said the statute of limitations at the time of the alleged crime was five years.
Rolfes also argued that a 2002 amending the state law to extend the statute of limitations to within 30 years of the date a victim attains majority did not apply to Robinson’s case, since the revision only applied to offenses after May 23, 2002.
Harris' brother and several former classmates told investigators that the alleged victim had claimed to be having sex with Robinson. He said this activity took place in her office, a Niantic house she shared with another educator, and two state parks. Harris said Robinson also bought him alcohol and nitrous oxide and let him drive her car despite his lack of a driver’s license.
Robinson denied having a sexual relationship with the student, but said he made inappropriate advances toward her and raped her at Giants Neck Park in the summer of 2001. She said she occasionally gave Harris rides to school if he missed the bus and let him drive once, and admitted to buying him alcohol on one occasion. Robinson claimed that she took these actions because she felt threatened by him.
Robinson was working as the assistant director of the Friendship School, which serves students ages three through five from New London and Waterford, when she was arrested. She was placed on administrative leave.
Harris also filed a civil suit in December of 2011 charging Robinson with sexual assault and battery, reckless sexual assault and battery, negligent sexual assault and battery, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, and negligence. The suit also charges the East Lyme Board of Education, former East Lyme Middle School principal Jerry Belair, and East Lyme Middle School social studies teacher Amanda Just with negligence.
The suit argues that as a result of Robinson’s actions, Harris has suffered “emotional distress, low self-esteem, distrust of people and dealing with authority figures, anger, frustration, depression, sleep disturbance, intrusive recollections of abuse, interference with his personal relationships, substance abuse, extreme and self-destructive sexual behavior, inability to form healthy relationships with women, and feelings of mistrust with psychological professionals.”
The suit also alleges that Just, Robinson’s former roommate, did not report suspected misconduct at their home and that Belair and the Board of Education failed to supervise Robinson’s activities.